Learning and Digital Environment of Dance – The Case of Greek Traditional Dance in Youtube

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The incorporation of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in education has changed the educational procedures through the creation and use of new teaching and learning environments with the use of computers and network applications that afford new dimensions to distance education. In turn, these emerging and in progress technologies, render new practices in many fields including the field of dance offering a fertile quest to everyone involved in the dance. Yet, a critical evaluation of the content of YouTube dance videos has not been carried out though what is eventually learned through YouTube is a key question. Based on the above, the aim of this study was to critically examine the way YouTube network channel as Computer Based Learning-CBL functions both as a learning tool and as a teaching result concerning the field of dance having as example a Greek traditional dance named Karagouna. YouTube dance videos were gathered through observation, while the dance exemplar used was based on ethnographic research. For the dance recording of the Karagouna performances examined from YouTube, Laban’s notation system (Labanotation) was used. For the analysis of the dance performances, the dance structural-morphological and typological method was adopted. Finally, for the comparison of the Karagouna dance performances examined from YouTube with the exemplar of the dancing community, the comparative method was used. It was proved that someone with little or no relation to dance is likely to learn dance with the use of YouTube, yet it is questionable what kind of dance will actually learn since in a number of cases the dance videos do not correspond to the performance of the dancing community. In addition, the outcome is different if someone with prior knowledge on the field of dance (dancer, dance teacher, dance student etc.) uses YouTube as a teaching and learning tool as, in this case, its use is useful and interactive.

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